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Saturday, December 15 , 2018, 4:04 pm | Fair 64º


Structure Fire Burns Garage at Santa Maria Home

Residents get out of the home with their pets, call 9-1-1 as smoke fills the home on Eagle Court

A fire burned a garage and its contents at a home on the 1400 block of Eagle Court in Santa Maria Wednesday morning.
A fire burned a garage and its contents at a home on the 1400 block of Eagle Court in Santa Maria Wednesday morning. (Janene Scully / Noozhawk photo)

A structure fire charred a garage at a Santa Maria home Wednesday morning, but residents and their pets escaped.

Crews from the Santa Maria Fire Department responded to the incident at 6:40 a.m. in the 1400 block of Eagle Court.

Residents getting ready for the day noticed electrical problems as smoke began filling the home. They fled to safety with the cats and dogs while calling 9-1-1. 

“They got here fast,” Deborah Yerena said of firefighters.

A passing ambulance also noted the column of smoke from the neighborhood and notified authorities at the same time as the residents called, Battalion Chief Tom Crakes said.

"A truck company cut ventilation holes in the roof to aid in the extinguishment of the fire. The garage had a heavy fuel load and required a lot of overhaul," Crakes said.

The fire was contained in about 20 minutes, Crakes said.

As she fled, Yerena said she saw flames shooting from a wall of the detached garage.

“It spread really quickly,” added Nicole Yerena, a Santa Maria High School senior.

The fire appeared to be confined to the garage and its contents, with damage estimated at $150,000.

The house was not damaged, but the residents can not return until electrical and water systems are repaired, Crakes said. The detached garage was red-tagged due to extent of damage.

Investigators determined the fire's cause was accidental, likely related to the clothes dryer, Crakes added.

The home had smoke detectors but they were not working at the time of the incident, Crakes said, reminding residents to check their smoke detectors.

"The occupants were up, but the fire was well established before they noticed it," Crakes said.

Four engines and a ladder truck were dispatched to the incident with assistance provided by the Santa Barbara County Fire Department and Cal Fire crews from San Luis Obispo County. Santa Maria Police Department and American Medical Response crews also responded.

Noozhawk North County editor Janene Scully can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

Contents of the charred garage are piled in the driveway after a structure fire at a home on the 1400 block of Eagle Court in Santa Maria. Click to view larger
Contents of the charred garage are piled in the driveway after a structure fire at a home on the 1400 block of Eagle Court in Santa Maria. (Janene Scully / Noozhawk photo)

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